When you’re running a business the most important engine you have is sales. Whether you’re running a conventional retail operation, or an online consultancy service, you need to sell your product with ruthless efficiency and tireless energy to keep your business moving. The revenue you generate through sales is the lifeblood of your business, giving you the resources you need to develop new products, make new hires and chase success, stability and growth.
Today we’re taking a look at the principles that will let you make sales and grow your consumers into a loyal army keeping your business afloat.
Know the Market
You can’t base your sales strategy on gut instinct and intuition. They’re an important tool for entrepreneurs, but underlying your confidence you need facts. You need to know what your chosen consumers find attractive, and what will drive them away. For example, pushing your product with deep discounts and emphasising value would actually be counterproductive if you’re building an audience with a profile that responds well to quality and buys into the idea of a prestige product.
If you’re looking for consumer research, UK based firms can partner with you to find out your exact needs and make sure the research programmes you embark on speak to your ambitions.
Promise the Moon, and Deliver It
As founder and CEO you are your business’ best expert for sales. No one knows more than you, and no one is more passionate about your business. That said, you need to make sure your enthusiasm to make the next sale doesn’t lead you to exaggerate what you can truly offer.
You might be able to supply a little more or knock a day or two off an estimate by driving your team harder and working longer hours, but if you do this as a matter of routine it’s going to lead to mass burnout. And of course, if you routinely offer much more than you can fulfil and fail you’re going to see your reputation undermined and find it much more difficult to win future pitches.
Retaining customers is almost as important as acquiring them in the first place. If your customers can easily buy from you, but find it difficult to get support, organise exchanges and returns and ask questions, that one sale isn’t going to turn into more.
Get a customer service process up and running as soon as you can. Decide on your key policies so can deliver a consistent service to whoever calls and try to place the customer experience at the heart of what you do so they are able to recommend you to their peers and grow your audience.